BECKMAN DRIVES VALVOLINE DODGE INTO NO. 7 IN DALLAS QUALIFYING ENNIS, Texas (Sept. 22, 2007) - In another unusual twist to the Countdown to Four playoff system in this year's NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, No. 1 in points Robert Hight failed...
BECKMAN DRIVES VALVOLINE DODGE INTO NO. 7 IN DALLAS QUALIFYING
ENNIS, Texas (Sept. 22, 2007) - In another unusual twist to the Countdown to Four playoff system in this year's NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, No. 1 in points Robert Hight failed to qualify at the O'Reilly NHRA Fall Nationals, while No. 2 in points Jack Beckman grabbed the No. 7 position.
Beckman, in the Valvoline/MTS Dodge Charger R/T, and John Force (in third) are the only two Funny Car drivers in the Countdown to Four to have qualified in the top half.
Beckman posted his quickest pass of the weekend, a 4.851-second elapsed time at 317.79 mph, in the cooler Friday-night session, which was backed up by three other solid runs of 4.988/308.00, 4.888/314.53 (second quickest of that round), and finally a 4.871/318.39, the quickest of the final round - all under temperatures in the 90s and high humidity.
"We were low of that session and second low of the third session," said Beckman, who enters Sunday's eliminations just 30 points behind Hight, "which are the ones that ought to mimic the conditions tomorrow.
"Again, it's like they let us write our own script. We do control our destiny to a large extent. We have Tony Pedregon (No. 5 in points) first round tomorrow. By no means a walk-over. It's going to be a tough race. If we can get past him that's huge, because now we actually start blocking for ourselves.
"We actually have a chance to leave in first and that's pretty exciting. We're not going to get ahead of ourselves, but I would have never bet that Robert Hight was not going to qualify again this year." This is Hight's second DNQ in 2007.
"It just goes to show how incredibly wide open this whole Countdown deal is," added Beckman.
"It's just unbelievably competitive here, but it's going to be fun tomorrow. I can't wait. This is our last chance and our best chance to stick the Valvoline car in the winner's circle, because V stands for victory."